I've spent the past couple of weeks looking at the multitude of photos we've taken of our golden girl over the years. It's easy taking pics of God's gorgeous creatures. Looking at them doesn't make me cringe like I do when viewing my own from - say - the junior high years. Awkward.
And we've taken so many more pics this week. Wanting to capture the moments, the changes, the nuances. Or maybe it just makes us feel like we're doing something, rather than just waiting for her surgery. Jon took the second photo while she rested in the back yard, contemplating the chase of a robin or a rabbit. Or maybe someone just hollered, "CHEESEBURGER!" Who knows?
We've also spent the week preparing the house. Making sure we have enough rugs to cover the hardwood floors, pulling Gabe's old baby gates from the basement, stocking up on rags to use for swelling. We also changed her diet this week, from plain old dog food to a gourmet mix of chicken, ham, veggies and beef. I have to admit - I actually enjoy cooking for her. Jon chuckled, "It's only because you know she'll eat anything you give her." Point taken. I tried to make BLTs the other day. Burned the bacon and forgot the lettuce.
I am sooooooooooo not a cook.
Gabe has taken so much of this in stride. Of course, he doesn't know life without Chaser, so I don't think he's as scared or as anxious as Jon and I are. When I explained about her upcoming surgery, that she'll have three legs afterward - making her even more special than she already is - he quickly asked, "And then her leg will grow back, right?"
I admit, it made me smile. Oh, to be five years old again. After I explained that, no, she'll always have three legs he nodded wisely and answered, "That'll be cool!"
In any case, this decision was made after long talks, much reading and talking with vets, and prayer. More than anything, it was made with our golden girl's quality of life in mind. I suspect she'll adjust more quickly than we will.
The cancer will still be there, lurking, waiting for another day to rear its ugly head. Doesn't matter. Each day that dawns will bring a new opportunity to run, to play, to swim and to love. We'll count those days as extra blessings until the sun sets on our life with Chaser.